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During the meeting

EU, UPDF Meet over DR Congo Security

“If the EAC regional forces being deployed unanimously decide to push M23 back, it won’t even take 24 hours, this they know very well,” Gen Elwelu roared.
posted onNovember 4, 2022

The Deputy Chief of Defence Forces Lt Gen Peter Elwelu on Thursday met representatives from the European Union at the Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs (MODVA) headquarters at Mbuya for a disccussion that focused on security issues, especially African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) operations and in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The EU delegation was headed by the Senior Advisor to the EU's Foreign Service on emerging threats in the Great Lakes Region, Horn of Africa and the western Indian Ocean Charles Stuart.

Lt Gen Elwelu told the delegation that Uganda is and has always been ready to work with the DRC until all different negative forces are defeated.

According to him, DRC has granted the UPDF freedom and permission to operate in the country to bring the activities of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) to an end while the regional forces will deal with the rest of the groups.

On M23 current advances to the Eastern city of Goma, Elwelu commented that Uganda is interested in dialogue and seeking peace in DRC.

He reiterated that Uganda does not support M23 because that would be suicidal since it would threaten the good existing relations between DRC and Uganda that led to carrying out joint operations against ADF. 

“If the EAC regional forces being deployed unanimously decide to push M23 back, it won’t even take 24 hours, this they know very well,” Gen Elwelu roared.

The Deputy CDF advocated for a multi-pronged approach to bring peace to the DRC.

“There is need to bring all the concerned parties and participants on board and engage in a dialogue as a unified force to curb down the enemy,” he said.

“We need logistical support as a regional force to be effective because without it, it will not be easy to make an impact.”

On Somalia, Lt Gen Elwelu insists that a drawdown is still far out of reach if the gains of AMISOM turned ATMIS are to be realized.

However, he applauded the Somali government and people for putting efforts to establish a credible army that will ensure peace and stability after ATMIS.

Charles Stuart applauded Uganda for the humanitarian work that the Ugandan Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) has done in the DRC over time.

“Uganda is a shining example of humanitarian support and its refugee policy the best ever,” he said.

However, he added that this comes at a price as resources meant to do other development activities are being diverted by both government and donors.

Stuart said that the European Union seeks to achieve a political dialogue and stability in the region with a strategic transitional plan of a roadmap for takeover in Somalia, but added that Somalia should be forthcoming in pursuing what they need and should see the EU as partners who are trying to help. 

He reiterated Somalia’s need to create a roadmap for takeover in terms of logistics, infantry forces, medical, and signal capacity among others.

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